McKay: County will soon begin releasing more COVID-19 data

McKay and others sitting a few feet from each other and looking at other supervisors on screen
A screenshot of Tuesday’s Board of Supervisors meeting, which was held online. Chairman Jeff McKay and County Executive Bryan Hill are seen on the right.

As coronavirus cases in the county and state continue to grow, Fairfax County Board of Supervisors Chairman Jeff McKay said Tuesday that the health department will soon be releasing more detailed data about the known cases in the county.

Responding to a question raised during a Twitter Q&A on Tuesday morning, McKay said that a more detailed dashboard featuring demographic data will soon be posted to the county website.

“At this point, the Health Dept is not providing case data on less than a county level,” McKay said in response to the question. “Thankfully, I know this will change soon. The Health Dept will have a dashboard online shortly with demographic case data.”

Currently the Fairfax County Department of Health has a breakdown of known coronavirus cases and deaths by age group on its website. The site does not break down cases by race or gender, nor does it list total tests and hospitalizations in the Fairfax Health District — which includes the county, City of Falls Church and Fairfax City. However tests and hospitalizations in individual health districts recently became available on the Virginia Department of Health website.

The county’s site also does not break down cases by geographic location, such as zip code or magisterial district. A spokeswoman for McKay said Thursday that the chairman has asked health department to create a heat map to show locations of cases in the county. The exact format has not be determined yet, however.

“We don’t know yet how it will be broken down,” said McKay spokeswoman Hannah Menchhoff. “We are leaving it up to the Health Department to decide how they feel the data would best be presented without revealing confidential information like zip code.”

Maryland began releasing coronavirus cases by zip code earlier this week, but Virginia has not done so yet. State Sen. Scott Surovell, whose 36th district includes a large part of the Richmond Highway area, is among those pushing for the state to begin posting that information.

Virginia and Fairfax County continue to see a steady climb in both coronavirus cases, deaths and hospitalizations. Thirty people have now died in the Fairfax Health District, and 271 people are hospitalized.

More than 1,100 people are hospitalized statewide, and while the Virginia Hospitalization and Healthcare Association says that there is plenty of beds available at the moment, there continues to be shortages of personal protection equipment (PPE) at six state hospitals as of Thursday.

Current coronavirus cases breakdown:

  • Cases in Virginia: 6,889 (as of April 16)
  • Tests in Virginia: 46,444 (as of April 16)
  • Deaths in Virginia: 208 (as of April 16)
    source: Virginia Department of Health

  • Cases in U.S. 605,390 (as of April 16)
  • Tests in United States: unknown 
  • Deaths in United States: 24,582 (as of April 16)